The Aberdare National Park are an isolated volcanic range that forms the eastern wall of the Great Rift Valley, running roughly 100km north south between Nairobi and Thomson's Falls. The National Park is formed above the main treeline of this range and the landscape is diverse with deep ravines that cut through the forested eastern and western slopes where there are many mountain streams and waterfalls. The Aberdares are an important water catchment area providing water to the Tana and Athi rivers and part of Central Rift and Northern drainage basins.
This range is the third highest in Kenya and the red soil is of volcanic origin and rich in organic matter. There are two main peaks, Ol Donyo Lesatima (3,999m) and Kinangop (3,906m) separated by a long saddle of alpine moorland at over 3,000m. The park is renowned for its waterfalls which have carved out gorges and ravines. These include Karuru Falls, which drops more than 300m, the Gura Falls that are on the opposite side of the same gorge, and the sheer drop of Chania Falls are all spectacular sites.
There is an array of activities available, including mountain climbing, hiking, trout fishing, game viewing, bird watching and nature walks. With an armed ranger you can walk to the highest peak Ol Donyo as well as do many other panoramic moorland hikes and forest walks. You can expect to see elephants, rhinos, buffalos, forest hogs, gazelles, genets, hyenas and if you are really lucky leopard and the elusive bongo. Of course chances of seeing some of these animals will be greatly increased if you stay within the park at night.
The unusual mixture of tropical forests, moorland, rugged terrain, streams and waterfalls combine to create an area of great scenic beauty. A visit here can be a great addition or substitute to Mt Kenya National Park as you will have the opportunity to experience a highland environment and enjoy unique scenery and flora which are only present in Kenya at altitude.